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Reframing beliefs and instiling facts for contemporary management of pregnancy-related pelvic girdle pain
  1. Jodie Pulsifer1,
  2. Susannah Britnell1,
  3. Adrienne Sim2,
  4. Jessica Adaszynski3,
  5. Sinead Dufour4
  1. 1 Full Circle Physiotherapy, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  2. 2 Full Circle Physiotherapy, Langley, British Columbia, Canada
  3. 3 Full Circle Physiotherapy, Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada
  4. 4 School of Rehabilitation Science, McMaster University Faculty of Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Jodie Pulsifer, Full Circle Physiotherapy, Burnaby, British Columbia, V5G1E5, Canada; jodie{at}

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Understanding pregnancy-related pelvic girdle pain (PPGP)

PPGP is a specific category of pelvic girdle pain (PGP) impacting those in the perinatal period and differs in its aetiology as it is related to pregnancy and associated biopsychosocial influences. PGP in pregnancy and through the first postpartum year is common and combined with low back pain is estimated to occur in 56%–72% of antepartum people with 20% reporting severe symptoms during 20–30 weeks’ gestation and 33%–50% reporting symptoms before 20 weeks’ gestation.1 2 PPGP is a significant cause of disability, reduced quality of life and early medical leave from work. People who experience more persistent symptoms in pregnancy can be at risk for poorer long-term outcomes.3 Lack of belief in resolution, increased emotional distress and pain severity have potential for persistent PGP after pregnancy.1 4 Early intervention in pregnancy and instiling the belief that it can improve will create a better long-term prognosis.

The challenge of biomechanical bias

Despite mounting evidence of the role that psychosocial and physiological factors play, PGP continues to be mainly understood and treated as a purely biomechanical issue. However, congruent with broader literature examining lumbopelvic pain more globally, PPGP must be understood along with the evolution of contemporary pain science regarding the multifaceted nature of pain and the context of each pregnant person’s unique lived experience.5 6 The 2017 Antepartum PGP …

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